The Social Value of Non-Deferential Belief

Allan Hazlett*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


We often prefer non-deferential belief to deferential belief. In the last twenty years, epistemology has seen a surge of sympathetic interest in testimony as a source of knowledge. We are urged to abandon epistemic individualism and the ideal of the autonomous knower in favour of social epistemology. In this connection, you might think that a preference for non-deferential belief is a manifestation of vicious individualism, egotism, or egoism. I shall call this the selfishness challenge to preferring non-deferential belief. The aim of this paper is to meet the selfishness challenge by arguing that non-deferential belief is (pro tanto) socially valuable.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-151
Number of pages21
JournalAustralasian Journal of Philosophy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes


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